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Homemade Rigs, Equipment, Apparatus  RSS feed

 
pollinator
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Location: Western Canadian mtn valley, zone 6b, 750mm (30") precip
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I recently started a thread (here in Gear) to enable members to show & described small, useful gadgets they’ve designed and/or made.  I mentioned there in my opening post that larger home-built rigs, machines, contraptions — whatever the label — are being created all the time by DIYers & homesteaders.  So here, in this thread, I thought maybe we could share some of these.

We can definitely learn from each other.  What have you made from wood, metal, PVC, or other materials?  Or, l you got a new project in the design stage & underway?
 
master pollinator
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Joel Bercardin wrote:I recently started a thread (here in Gear) to enable members to show & described small, useful gadgets they’ve designed and/or made.  I mentioned there in my opening post that larger home-built rigs, machines, contraptions — whatever the label — are being created all the time by DIYers & homesteaders.  So here, in this thread, I thought maybe we could share some of these.

We can definitely learn from each other.  What have you made from wood, metal, PVC, or other materials?  Or, l you got a new project in the design stage & underway?



I have a few heavy haul roads I wanted to keep opens this winter. The longest is a half mile long and 12 feet wide, so I spent about two hours building this V-plow to drag behind my tractor, not sure if it would work or not.

It did!

In fact it takes about two hours off my plowing time every snow storm. It's strength comes in its laminated make-up, and of course internal bracing, but really works well.

I have yet to try it for this, but it can also be used to smooth land for pastures and fields. Its long length and wide width allowing soil to be spread and filled to make a smooth field.

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12 Foot V-Plow
 
Travis Johnson
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A few years ago I bought a Wallenstein Log Trailer which has a lot of uses unto its own. But over the years I have realized that it is a perfect platform to build off from. Since I literally do not have to reinvent the wheel (since it is a trailer) and has a boom and hydraulics, I can do a lot more with it then just move wood, backhoe and drill holes in the soil.

Probably one of the most useful items has been a grader blade.

A grader blade on a 3 point hitch of a tractor just does NOT work. When you go into a hole, the grader blade drops even deeper, and when the tractor goes over a bump, the grader blade lifts higher, all because the grader blade extends off the back. To get something really smooth, this does not work.

By building a gooseneck, I can bolt my grader blade onto the hitch of my log trailer and get a really long span between the rear wheel of my tractor, and the wheels of my trailer. In that way, the grader blade only moves half the distance and is not exaggerated in movement like a three point hitch grader blade. And with the walking beam suspension, if the blade kicks up a rock, the rear axle floats over the rock without affecting the blade. The grader blade can also be manually swung to straight, or angled to either side.

In use, it takes only two passes to get something really flat. the first cut can be really deep, or nothing at all, but then the second pass smooths everything right out. It always amazes me how smooth I can make a road with this grader blade.

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Travis Johnson
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This one was quite the fabrication, but enables me to be pretty lazy and take a lot of the work out of firewood....

Again, using the log loader, I removed the grapple and have it so I can install an upside down woodsplitter. This has a fourway head so I can split most rounds of wood with a single pass.

But to enable me to run the log loader, I built a "carrier" that attaches to my three point hitch. This carrier holds a PTO hydraulic pump, a reservoir for the hydraulic oil, seat and hitch. By placing tthe splitting lever on the arm rest of the seat, I can split wood without getting up. Naturally I added a cup holder in case I get busy "working". :-)

All I have to do is swing my woodsplitter out over the woodpile, pick up a round of firewood, pinch it...but not fully split it, then once over my dumpbody, finish splitting the wood. When the dump body is full, then I just back up to my woodshed and dump the wood. later I push it inside with my front end loader of my tractor....I don't bother with stacking it.

My dumpbody is not on my log loader in these two photos however...
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Picking Up A Round
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Splitting the wood
 
Travis Johnson
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Pretty simple build, but I put a 3 point hitch on a bulldozer which is really nice! There is not too many places a bulldozer cannot go...snow, mud, sand, etc and being able to power something that is a 3 point hitch, or requires a PTO is really handy.

(Note: I had just installed an after cooler on my reverser and so that was why my tinwork was off the tractor!)

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Travis Johnson
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Sometimes simple works; like this seed spreader.

I had too many acres to walk around and spread seed by hand, so I cobbled this up. Just a drill spinning a bucket lid with angle iron bars to throw the seed (30 foot width). A Generator spun the drill, while my wife drove the tractor and I dumped the seed in with a coffee can. This was just a test, but it worked really well.

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Travis Johnson
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Again simple often works best.

I was crop-rotating a corn field into a hay field and needed to smooth my field before seeding it down. All I did was deep plow the soil to loosen it up, then using my skidder and a log, dragged the field smooth. The log works well because it is really long, so it spans a wide area making the field flatter, yet its round shape pushes rocks into the loose soil so less rocks have to be picked.

I hope people are not missing the bigger picture on this stuff: a person does NOT need a whole lot of equipment to do the things they need to do around a farm. In fact to farm today, doing things creatively is going to save the farmer a lot of money, and already there is not enough profit in farming.


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Travis Johnson
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In order to cut saplings off the stump, then grab them, and then load them directly onto my log trailer; I designed and built this feller-buncher.

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Feller Buncher
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Feller Buncher II
 
Joel Bercardin
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Here’s a fairly simple project.  It's a firewood rack for our porch.  I designed/made it in the fall of 2016 (and "road tested" it over the two past winters & early springs).

I made the rack from 2" and 1.5" square steel tubing that I welded together.  Had to buy the 2” new, but I seem to remember having the 1.5" as on-hand salvage.

The east end of our porch is situated only about 8 yards from the big shed where we stack a winter's worth of mostly split firewood. Hence, I bring split wood & rounds over to the porch rack without much effort.  We have an efficient wood-heating system, so the rack didn't need to be too awfully large.  I designed it to hold 24-36-hour's worth of firewood.  This rack replaced one we had that was taller and narrower — but because of that, it was hard to grab the specific size of wood we might want. Larger, heavier pieces often wound up too near the bottom, with the bottom being actually only a few inches above the porch surface.

Ergonomics & Dimensions: Leg/posts: 35” high; length: 39”; depth: 14.5”.  Clearance from deck is 14” — so, we don’t have to bend over much to grab some wood.  We find that stacked wood sits at a level that's easy to access for our choice of the sizes of chunks we'll need upcoming. Another desirable attribute is that there’s room underneath for temporary placement of things. For instance, we usually use a spot on the porch as a second "refrigerator" in winter (note the deep stew pot in the pic).
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Travis Johnson
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This was a "Firewood Processor" I made quite a few years ago. As shown earlier, it has been upgraded since then to a hands-off splitting operation, but still worked good.

I took the woodsplitter (homemade) and mounted it on an old manure spreader. This enabled me to adjust the height via the 3 point hitch, but also using a PTO pump, control the speed of the woodsplitter by the throttle setting of the tractor. I then removed the tines on the manure spreader, and unhooked the drive from the axle to the live bed chains. In this way, after splitting  I could just toss the wood in the back of the woodsplitter. Then when I got down to my woodshed, I just offloaded the wood, but instead of going forward to get the wood, using a lever, I just cranked the wood back to me using the live bed chains.



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all of these are awesome guys!  good work.  i love see others inventions and ideas.  and i love the fact that simplicity has been mentioned several times.  
here is a 3 point hitch adapter i made myself from upcycled junk, just an old trailer hitch modified but it works



here is another video in the series where i actually put it to the test.  i plowed snow for several hours that day
 
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